GFM Network News


Newborn babies’ first gut bacteria may have effect on ability to fight disease

This could eventually allow doctors to establish beneficial bacteria right after birth

New research showing that the first bacteria introduced into the gut have a lasting impact may one day allow science to adjust microbiomes — the one-of-a-kind microbial communities that live in our gastrointestinal tracts — to help ward off serious chronic diseases. Findings by U of A microbial ecologist Jens Walter and his colleagues suggest

The researchers studied Acmispon strigosus, a plant in the pea family that is native to the southwestern United States.

Reach for the top

It’s not just soil microbes that set crops up for success — it’s the right ones

Beautiful things can happen when plants surround themselves with the right microbes, according to researchers at the University of California (Riverside). They looked at Acmispon strigosus, a plant in the pea family, and found a thirteenfold growth increase in plants that partnered with a highly effective strain of the nitrogen-fixing bacteria Bradyrhizobium. The ability of


Vaccines can have a major payback, as much as fivefold for the BVD vaccine, says beef economist Kathy Larson.

Spend a little now and make money later

Reduced death loss, fewer open cows, and reduced shedding 
are major benefits from a proper vaccination program

The adage goes, ‘It takes money to make money.’ It is no different in the beef industry. “Low-cost producers do not cut corners on pasture, bulls, and herd health,” said beef economist Kathy Larson of the Western Beef Development Centre. “Spending less on these items often leads to reduced herd productivity and thereby raises your

Antibodies from cattle, combined with engineered antigens, can trigger an immune response. A similar technique could work in humans.

Cow antibodies show a path to fighting human disease

Novel vaccines combine natural antibodies and engineer antigens 
to trigger immune response

Old Bessie may have shown researchers a new way to fight human diseases. A recent paper from University of Guelph scientists says a novel vaccine that protects cattle from a viral-driven respiratory disease may hold the secret to creating similar treatments for human diseases, ranging from gut infections to HIV and cancer. Azud Kaushik, a

G7 told to act on antibiotics as dreaded superbug hits U.S.

The U.S. has recorded its first case of resistance to last-resort drug, 
but it has already surfaced in Canada and Europe

Britain told the G7 industrial powers on May 27 to do more to fight killer superbugs as the United States reported its first patient with bacteria resistant to a last-resort antibiotic. U.S. scientists said the infection in a 49-year-old Pennsylvania woman “heralds the emergence of truly pandrug-resistant bacteria” because it could not be controlled even


It’s prime time for anthrax, so keep a close eye on your cattle

Highly contagious, infectious soil-borne disease finds victims in grazing livestock

With high temperatures and drought, cattle and bison are at a higher risk of anthrax. Two bison deaths northwest of North Battleford, Saskatchewan have recently been confirmed as caused by anthrax, and seven others are suspected. Producers are encouraged to keep a watchful eye and to refresh their memories on what to do when anthrax

PED vaccine could aid in disease fight

Developers are waiting for approval to begin clinical trials

Pork producers may soon have a powerful new tool in the fight against porcine epidemic diarrhea or PED. The Vaccine and Infectious Disease Organization’s International Vaccine Centre at the University of Saskatchewan, better known as VIDO-InterVac, is waiting for final approvals from the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) to begin clinical trials of a vaccine

Beef 911: Preventing negative side-effects of cattle vaccinations

It is good practice to take a walk through any recently vaccinated cattle to check for reactions

There are now a multitude of vaccines on the market for all facets of the beef and dairy industry. Vaccinating has become part of the biosecurity program on your farm, ranch or dairy. It is good for our industry as it controls disease, minimizes antibiotic use, improves production, and decreases death or losses from abortion.


More clubroot confirmed in Manitoba, but mostly low levels

The good news — farmers can still prevent this potentially destructive canola disease from getting out of control

Forty-eight Manitoba fields are confirmed to have clubroot spores, a soil-borne, potentially destructive canola disease, up from 13, according to the latest clubroot survey update from Manitoba Agriculture, Food and Rural Development (MAFRD). The results were expected and officials predict they’ll find even more with additional sampling. The good news is the number of clubroot

CFIA blames wild birds for spread of avian influenza

While there are no new cases of bird flu in Canada, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency says 
it’s still too early to breathe a sigh of relief

Officials with the Canadian Food Inspection Agency are confident that the cases of avian influenza they’ve responded to in Ontario and British Columbia are the result of contact with wild birds, not farm-to-farm transmission. “From the seasonality of this disease and the characterization of the virus — we cannot be 100 per cent sure that